If you can't beat them, buy them.
We're talking to you, Gilead Sciences (GILD) . You are incapable of developing drugs successfully outside of HIV and hepatitis C. The latest pipeline blowup announced Wednesday evening proves the rest of the biotech world does internal R&D better than you. So, please, stop trying and start buying.
Money is not the issue, Gilead. You have almost $32 billion in cash. Sure, 80% of that money is parked offshore, but President Trump is going to let you bring that cash home at a modest 10% tax rate. You need more money? Then just borrow. Debt's almost free these days.
Gilead, we've all heard your excuses. You considered buying some companies but pulled back because their drugs were too early and risky; other potential targets were too expensive. Blah, blah, blah. No one wants to hear excuses any more.
Start. Buying. Now.
If you need a hug, we'll give you a hug. We'll pat you on the back and tell you once again how you just killed it with Sovaldi and Harvoni. And yes, we understand the high water mark left by $19 billion in peak hepatitis C sales last year is tough to overcome.
Start. Buying. Now.
For as much as we love and respect you, Gilead, the current situation is unacceptable. The once great and mighty biotech Gilead cannot trade at a 6x forward earnings multiple! Do you understand that Pfizer trades at twice the forward earnings multiple as you? PFIZER!!! Holy crap, that's embarrassing.
Do you need suggestions?
Buy Incyte (INCY) . You'll get Jakafi, the best myelofibrosis drug on the market (as you well know since it just beat the pants off of your own myelofibrosis candidate momelotinib) plus a promising IDO inhibitor to help you -- finally -- establish a toehold in cancer immunotherapy. We're also confident you can probably find a talented executive within the Incyte ranks to run your oncology business -- a job that's been unfilled since February!
Not interested in Incyte? Fine, then buy Tesaro (TSRO) for its PARP inhibitor. Yes, it is expensive but so is everything else. Suck it up.
Take a flyer on cell therapy for cancer and buy Kite Pharma (KITE) or Juno Therapeutics (JUNO) . Buy Vertex Pharmaceuticals (VRTX) or Alexion Pharmaceuticals (ALXN) . Buy Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (REGN) ! (I like Norbert Bischofberger but George Yancopoulos would be an upgrade as chief science officer.)
No single acquisition is going to replace the Sovaldi/Harvoni revenue pile. Again, we know this. We don't expect an instantaneous reversal of the revenue declines coming in 2017 and 2018 and beyond.
What we want, Gilead, is for you to try. Just try. You've wowed us in the past with your M&A acumen, so let's do it again. Buy a bunch of companies. Some small. Some mid-sized. Buy revenue now. Reset the pipeline for revenue in the future. Be bold. Show us a path to new growth. Dare to fail. We know not everything will work out.
Anything is better than what you're doing now, which is nothing. The doing nothing act needs to stop. Quickly.